With the introduction of smart technology that can be worn on the wrist, healthcare practitioners are better able to collaborate with their patients to obtain information for their treatment while also assisting them in developing good habits in their daily lives. Wearable gadgets, such as watches, were on their way to becoming obsolete when people began carrying smartphones in their pockets. 

However, with the integration of technology into wearable devices, the wrist has become a popular area to look for information once again. Keeping track of time is just the beginning of what these gadgets are capable of, and there has been considerable interest in the potential advantages of wearable technology in the healthcare field.

Wearable medical gadgets that allow people to interact with their healthcare data and therapy is not a new notion. Diabetics are required to wear glucose monitors. Instead of relying on a gadget that sits on a table and must be linked, implanted devices such as pacemakers and defibrillators may give a life-saving, personal connection with patients.

But what is the importance of wearable technology in healthcare, and why shall we emphasize it?

What Is Wearable Technology In Healthcare?

Wearable devices include any portable gadgets that can be worn, such as smartwatches, body patches, ear wearables, headbands, smart garments, and smart eyewear.

These devices are designed to track, gather, and monitor users’ health data, ranging from step counts and calories burned to heart rate, glucose level, stress, sweat levels, and even oxygen saturation level, to provide continuous and accurate health results to patients to help them get better treatment faster and more effectively.

Benefits Of Wearable Technology In Healthcare?

These are the advantages of wearable technology in healthcare:

  • Encourages Proactive Healthcare

One of the most common ways in which individuals respond to prospective health problems is reactive. It is only natural for them to seek medical attention when they begin to feel unwell or in pain, or if they notice something unusual in their environment. The use of wearable technology has the potential to provide a more proactive approach to healthcare. 

It is possible to utilise wearables to take action in the early stages of health concerns rather than responding after they have already begun to cause difficulties for the wearer. An approach to healthcare that is more proactive may detect problems early on before they grow into bigger problems that might have potentially life-threatening health repercussions.

People who already have health problems benefit from discovering anomalies as soon as possible. It is possible to detect medical crises as soon as they arise when wearables are used to monitor health status. To ensure that crises are addressed as fast as possible, the system may also be configured to inform others, such as family members or medical experts.

  • Keeps Patients Engaged

When people utilise wearable technology to track their health, they become much more involved with their health. Users may keep informed about their health issues by gaining access to the real-time data generated by their device and analysing it. When patients can monitor their health using wearables rather than depending only on physicians’ testing, they feel more in control of their health.

The majority of fitness trackers keep track of several elements of health, such as activity levels, heart rate, and sleep quality. For consumers to be able to examine their metrics and spot abnormalities or inconsistencies in their health, the gadget continuously gathers data. Increasing people’s metrics by participating in healthy behaviours such as obtaining more sleep and exercising might drive them to enhance their metrics. 

Many trackers contain functions that keep track of weight and calorie consumption to encourage people to eat more healthfully. It is only via wearable gadgets that the capacity to measure progress may be added to the realm of health and fitness in a previously unattainable way.

  • Performs Many Functions

There are many different kinds of wearable gadgets now available on the market, each with its own set of applications. While consumer-oriented gadgets are the most frequent, other devices that are intended for use in the medical area that is available. Examples include wearable biological sensors that are used to measure things like heart rate and breathing rate, to name a few examples. 

Smart hearing aids that are electronic are also becoming more popular. There are devices available for diabetes patients that continually monitor glucose levels with the use of a sensor inserted under the skin and connected to a smartphone through Bluetooth. As wearables become more widely available, more medical applications for these devices will be developed as well.

Daily, new and experimental wearable technology is introduced to the market. For example, a slew of new technologies claim to be able to assist in improving posture. Other one-of-a-kind wearables include gadgets that monitor UV exposure, correct the circadian rhythm, and assist in the regulation of body temperature. These one-of-a-kind wearables are designed to address particular challenges that may not have been addressed before by other forms of technology.

  • Benefits Healthcare Providers

Wearable technology has the potential to deliver huge advantages to healthcare professionals. Medical providers may get a better understanding of the difficulties impacting a patient by employing wearable devices to collect and analyse patient data over an extended period. 

They will be able to utilise this information to establish a more accurate diagnosis than they would have been able to make without the device’s assistance. Wearable technology has the potential to save money in the healthcare sector as well. It is believed that 20 per cent of all healthcare expenses are caused by a lack of regular physical activity, a lack of proper sleep, and addictions to substances such as alcohol, narcotics, or cigarettes. 

Wearable technology may help patients become healthier by encouraging them to engage in physical activity and have better sleep habits. This would minimise the pressure on the healthcare system. In addition, some insurance firms have suggested that customers who use wearables have their rates reduced to promote more widespread adoption.

  • Monitor Valuable Patients

The ability to monitor vulnerable patients from a distance is one of the most innovative applications of wearable technology. While many individuals now use wearables to monitor their health, many more would desire a method to monitor the health of family members who are at risk of becoming ill. 

There is a high demand for gadgets and services that may be used to care for family members, such as children or elderly parents, say researchers at PwC’s Health Research Institute. Wearable technology is a fantastic tool for family caregivers to use to keep an eye on their elderly loved ones who are in danger.

Wearable technology may also be used by healthcare practitioners to monitor patients who are at risk. To keep physicians informed about their recovery and to ensure that no problems arise, patients might use wearables when they return home after surgery or an operation. 

The use of wearables allows patients to be discharged from the hospital and return home while still keeping an eye on their health status, which reduces the strain on healthcare systems overall.

Existing Wearable Technology Innovations In Healthcare

In 1958, a pacemaker was implanted and worn by a patient for the treatment of arrhythmia, which was the first medical device ever developed. The creation of smart gadgets that operate as “minicomputers” has occurred since then, allowing for the long-term and remote monitoring of patients from any location and at any time, thanks to technological advancements.

  • Wearable Fitness Trackers

The first mass-market portable gadget, the Fitbit was successful in capturing the attention of sport-oriented and health-conscious consumers. Exercise trackers were originally intended to be used to measure step counts, calories burnt, and heart rate, with fitness advice being shown on the screen.

  • Smart Health Watches

This technology elevated the functionality of wristbands that just counted steps to a whole new level. Smartphones are now widely regarded as a viable medical instrument, capable of performing a wide range of activities, including the measuring of cardiac rhythms.

  • ECG Monitors

Individualized healthcare information technology solutions for users with cardiac issues, these devices are capable of measuring electrocardiograms and transmitting correct data to the user’s doctor in real-time.

  • Blood Pressure Smart Monitors

An oscillometric blood pressure smart monitor that can measure blood pressure, as well as general body activity, may be purchased. This allows the devices to monitor and analyse the relationship between daily activity and blood pressure measures, among other things.

  • Biosensors

As a self-adhesive patch, an outstanding gadget for boosting preventative health care may collect and save data continually while also alerting the user about the possibility of cardiac or respiratory arrest.

  • Sweat-Sensors

Sensors and wearable technology play an important role in healthcare. Such gadgets, which monitor a person’s sweat levels, may warn them of the possibility of a seizure and send messages to both the person’s device and their doctor.

Significant Impact Of Wearable Technology In Healthcare

The population is becoming older. This is the world we live in. If wearables are more accurate in predicting mortality risks when dealing with older folks, that is what we want to see. One of the most prevalent challenges that older persons have to deal with daily is health problems as a result of falls.

Fortunately, portable gadgets can aid in the examination of body activity and the provision of efficient fall prevention recommendations. Heatstroke detection, mental status monitoring, and the avoidance of sudden arrhythmic death using a wearable cardioverter defibrillator are all examples of what is currently taking place.

All of the cutting-edge portable gadgets make it simpler to monitor hazards that might potentially endanger the lives of patients since the technology allows for the rapid and perfect examination of a wide range of parameters (heart rate, oxygen saturation, body temperature, blood pressure, etc.)

Best Wearable Technology In Healthcare Examples

The portable technology has already woven itself into people’s lives, altering our perceptions of health care and the need of being physically active regularly. Listed below are just a handful of examples of wearable technology in healthcare:

  • AVA

An uncannily accurate portable device that assists in tracking women’s health, including fertility, pregnancy, weight and sleep monitoring, as well as stress assessment. Recent investigations have established that it has an 89 per cent accuracy rate in predicting fertility.

  • KardioMobile

Designed by AliveCor to monitor and diagnose cardiac problems, the electrocardiogram (ECG) is a non-invasive tool. When connected to the back of iPhone and Android mobile devices, it may be used to monitor heart activity by transmitting data from chest and finger sensors to the mobile device. It has become a doable daily practice to keep an eye out for signs of heart disease.

  • PIP

A saviour for a populace that is always under pressure and pressure. A little gadget is meant to monitor your level of stress and to assist you in de-escalating your level of tension as necessary. When you move your body, your electrodermal activity varies, and the gadget detects these changes and transmits signals to your mobile application.

  • Withings Blood Pressure

Your heart rate and blood pressure should be checked as precisely as possible, just as your doctor would do. There is a trick to this: the blood pressure monitor takes three measures before calculating the average and most accurate reading. In addition, the monitor communicates the information to the app on your phone through Bluetooth.

  • TempTraq

A digital thermometer that is redefining the industry. The device is in the shape of a soft and pleasant patch that may be fitted to the body for up to 48 hours to continually monitor the temperature. Furthermore, it is linked to your mobile device, allowing it to send warnings and messages to you when necessary.

This device is rapidly rising in popularity among parents since it makes it simple to take a child’s temperature without disturbing the youngster while manually and stressfully taking the temperature multiple times.

  • BioScarf

At its most relevant, the first scarf to protect against pollutants, allergies, colds, and flu are still in use. This Bioscarf includes an integrated air filter that helps to keep the environment clean. The filter will shield the user from the vast majority of airborne toxins that may be harmful to their health if they breathe them in.

  • SmartSleep By Philips

Philips has created a Headband that is intended to improve the quality of deep sleep. It was created by physicians and researchers to provide relief to those who are experiencing sleep difficulties. 

Using sensors, the headband monitors the body’s activity during the various phases of sleep and then transmits this information to a mobile application. The app will then display the stats and give recommendations to improve your sleep quality. The future is certainly exciting – wearable technology in healthcare is just one more example of how information technology solutions are already transforming our environment to make it a better place to live in the present.

Future Of Wearable Technology In Healthcare

Consumers are said to be becoming more comfortable with the idea of wearing gadgets that measure their physical activity. Those living in North America, Europe, and the Asia Pacific area will be among the first to adjust to new circumstances and make use of technological solutions for portable devices. 

Hearables are a kind of wearable health technology that is considered a dark horse. Ear-worn devices, which were originally intended to improve hearing, are now equipped with an astounding array of features, including heart rate monitoring, sleep examination, steps count and calories burned count and even brain wave analysis.

Finally, in the sphere of healthcare, smart clothes and skin patches are beginning to see significant success. It is hardly unexpected, considering that by 2025, 10 per cent of the population will already be wearing smart clothing. When regular monitoring is essential, it is the latest vogue and the revolutionary technique to improve patient care.